Young Mom Kills Intruder: Is Murder Ever Justified?

Posted on by Jennifer Bardall (MrsJenB)
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Social media and news outlets were abuzz recently with the story of an 18-year old mom in Oklahoma who, when armed men were breaking into her house to steal her deceased husband's medication, took the advice of a 911 operator who told her to "do what she had to do" in order to protect herself and her baby. So...she did.

What she did was shoot one man in the torso with a shotgun once he stepped foot into the house. He was pronounced dead at the scene. This girl is being lauded as a heroine, a bad-ass, for defending herself and her child this way. Meanwhile, the man's accomplice is being charged with murder due to his part in planning the home invasion.

Of course, this isn't the first time someone has been forced to kill as a last resort in order to protect themselves from an intruder. In fact, just two days before the incident in Oklahoma, a 14-year old killed an intruder (one of four intruders, in fact) in order to protect himself and his sister. Because you need four grown men to overtake two children, evidently. The kids were alone in their North Carolina home at the time. Just like in Oklahoma, there won't be charges in this case either. In fact, many states have laws which allow lethal force if a person's life and property are in danger.

Should a warning shot be fired? Should the intruder be warned that the homeowner is armed? Some people feel that they should. Because, apparently, when someone makes the choice to invade someone else's home and life (and especially when they're carrying a foot-long hunting knife and behaving threateningly), they deserve that extra consideration. We can't forget their rights. Or something.

And then there's the folks who are tired of hearing of normal, hard-working people being victimized. They cheer when they hear stories like this. They likely wish they had the guts to do something like that themselves if they were in that position. Murder is murder, after all, but in such cases it's justified. Or so those gun-happy crazies like to believe.

Whatever side of the argument you fall on, put yourself in the shoes of an 18-year old with a small baby, who just buried her husband. Two armed men are trying to break into your home. Wouldn't you wish for a shotgun of your own?

Is murder justified if it's in self-defense?

3015 views & 23 votes

Debate It! 4

Killing in self defense is not murder. It doesn't fit the definition of murder. Sometimes in self defense cases, there is a "duty to retreat," where if you can safely run away instead of killing the attacker, you have to do so. But that doesn't apply in your own home. The facts of this case indicate that this woman was completely justified.

Posted By Nate,

What Nate said. This isn't murder; sucks that someone died, but that is a risk associated with armed robbery; the victims might shoot back, so, I dunno, DON'T INVADE THE HOME, maybe?

Posted By rseitzinger,

There should be no debate here whatsoever. The mother did what she had to do. She did what any mother would have done to protect her children.

Posted By Writtenin1981,

If they were in that stance. Homicide is liquidate, behind many, still in such cases it's justified. Or so those musket-blithe crazies equal to trust.

Posted By strobin,

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